Car in Venice

Old May 26th, 2008, 03:38 AM
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Car in Venice

In Venice Oct and will have car as part of a longer tour. Should we stay on the outskirts or is it possible to find parking in more central accomodation? Any tips would be very much appreciated.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:39 AM
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Hi twoflower,

as you may have twigged, what most people think of as the centre of Venice is comprised of land [just] and canals - no scope there for cars or buses. the closest you can get with a car is the giant car parks in the piazzale Roma, which is the major bus terminus for buses coming in from outside. from there you would either walk or get a boat to your accommodation.

alternatively, you could stay in Mestre, which is the closest place on the mainland, and catch a bus/train into Venice. [not as good IMO - you miss out on a lot especially at night when the trippers have gone home]

you can take your car to Venice lido, [there's a ferry] but as you can only drive up and down the lido, there doesn't seem much point.

alternatively, you could return your car to the hirer when you get to Venice, and then pick up another when you leave.

hope this helps,

regards, ann
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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:39 AM
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First - never stay on the outskirts of Venice (Mestre). If there is on place on this earth where you should adjust your budget to stay in the middle of everything, ot is Venice.

Second, there is no parking in Venice because there are no cars. There is long term parking at a large (massive) garage that is very easy to get to after you cross the causeway from the mainland. From there is is a short water taxi ride to the heart of it all.

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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:59 AM
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Another alternative is to leave your car in Mestre and take the train into Venice. It's a ten minute train ride and there are a bunch of garages across the street from the Mestre train station. We left our car there for 4 days with no problem. The cost for parking is less than at the car park at Piazzale Roma and you don't have to cross the bridge (in your car, obviously you have to cross it on the train but then you don't have to worry about traffic).
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Old May 26th, 2008, 05:06 AM
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>> Another alternative is to leave your car in Mestre and take the train into Venice. <<

Or hop on the bus that leaves from the train station, as we did...
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Old May 26th, 2008, 07:42 AM
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We've been to Venice three times, each time driving directly to the large carpark which is located right where you will be able to catch a vaporetta to your hotel. It's ever so simple and stress free. I agree with one of the other posters...please spend the extra $$ and stay in Venice itself. It's such an incredible experience - you must absorb it as fully as possible.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 08:13 AM
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Another alternaive, superior to Mestre IMHO, is the Lido. There you can park at the hotel and have your luggage taken to your room. (With many hotel choices in Venice proper you might end up schlepping it all over town). It is also the last stop on the vaporetto (water bus), which means a 12 min vaporetto ride to San Marco. The car ferry ride from the main parking lot upon entry into Venice onto Lido is 45 min, 18 Euro each way, as of a couple of years ago. The ferry is known as the Tronchetto, as it leaves from the island of Tronchetto.

Like many above, I would not stay in Mestre and day trip. Even Lido is a borderline choice for me.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 11:39 AM
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You stay in Venice - not Mestre ( anot very cahrming and quite industrial suburb).

Depending on how long you will be in Venice and your other uses for the car you either

1) drive the length of the causeway and leave the car at the garage at Piazzele Roma. Do NOT leave anything at all in the car - take everything with you to the hotel. Contact you hotel to find out the best means of getting there (some have private docks if you want to take a water taxi, some will send a bellman to meet you at a vaporeto stop).

2)If you will be in Venice several days it may pay to turn in your car and pick up a new one when you leave - rather than pay parking fees as well as the daily rental rate - assuming you've rented from one of the major companies that has an office at Piazzele Roma.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:23 PM
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Thanks for all these helpful replies. What I'm picking up is to stay in the centre and not in outlying suburbs like Mestre. Lido might be better, but the centre is better still. Is that how everyone sees it?

I don't think we can return the car temporarily because it is a French lease, not a rental. Our choices for car parking seem to narrow down to the Piazzola Roma, although the reference to theft is a slight concern.

Before we abandon the idea of staying out entirely, Padua looks a nice town with much to see. Would commuting from there be an option, or is Venice centre really much much better? Thanks...

Before we commit to staying centrally and car
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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:25 PM
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Re above - "is Venice centre really much much better" as a place to stay overnight at, I meant. Thanks,
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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:30 PM
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>> is Venice centre really much much better" as a place to stay overnight at, << YES!!!

Also - you have another (less expensive) choice besides P. Roma. Park in a secure lot in Mestre across from the train station and take either a train or bus to P. Roma.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:40 PM
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Agree! I can't imagine ending my charmed day in Venice on a 40 minute train ride back to Padua. Strolling through the little streets after dinner is the best part! And, lucky you, you're going to be there at a perfect time: good weather, fewer crowds.

Park at Mestre, train to Venice. As you exit the train station you'll thank your lucky stars you're staying there!
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Old May 26th, 2008, 04:41 PM
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Twoflower-I adore Padova, the most incredible art treasures of Giotto are located there, I will be back in Venice in July for the great Venetian festival of Redentore, and I plan to go back to Padova to see La Capella Scrovegni once again, it is so impressive, also the Duomo, and its last Judgment frescos, from the Giotto school; from its bridges to its buildings, Padova is one very picturesque city. It takes exactly 30 minutes by train to reach Padova, and it is interesting, you'd think it would be crushed by tourists like Venice always is, but it generally isn't-which makes it quite nice to move around and to enjoy the many arcaded buildings and beautiful piazze in the pedestrianized center.

Myself, I don't think it is a bad idea to stay in Padova and train in-particularly if you want to see more than just Venice. However, as between staying in Mestre and the historical center of Venice, I definitely would say stay in Venice-it's difficult to get a real sense of Venice's charm without being part of the life there, day and night, as has been mentioned, after the tourists are gone. So I would leave the car at Tronchetto, and stay in the historical center, or, stay in Padova, a gorgeous art city of itself, and train in to Venice.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 05:24 PM
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The phrase is;

"See Venice and die"

Yes, we are all imploring you to stay in Venice proper.

Walking alone at night or in the early morning will make your visit - period.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 05:36 PM
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Actually, I'm not imploring Twoflower to stay in Venice, I think Padova is wonderful, and would form just as good a base for seeing Venice as staying inside historical Venice, which is QUITE a bit more expensive than Padova, even with the nominal train fare.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 05:51 PM
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Girl;

Wonderful Padua might be, but I hardly think that makes it a sensible base for exploring the most unique city on earth.


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Old May 26th, 2008, 06:09 PM
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It makes very good sense, actually, and people do it all the time. People even try to base themselves in Verona, of all places, to see Venice! Verona is a good hour and a half away by train.

Padova is a wonderful place, the mayor of Venice has entered into a kind of city partnership with Padova, more and more events are to be held "jointly" between the two cities, even La Fenice opera house is going to be "extended" in order that it not just be the opera house for Venice but of the Veneto-and particularly Padova.

The two art cities have much in common, but are uniquely different-Giotto, who did some of the MOST beautiful frescoes on this earth, who was even praised in his time by Dante in "La Divina Commedia" for his extraordinary art, did his best work in Padova, besides his work on the doors and inside the Battistero outside the Duomo in Florence.

Not everyone likes staying in Venice, hard as that may seem for Venice lovers to believe, and are perfectly happy staying in Mestre, with its lower costs, than in the historical center. I have a favorite restaurant in Mestre that I like very much-the food is quite good there, whereas in Venice it tends to be quite expensive, and can be hit or miss. For those who don't wish to stay in the historical center, I can appreciate that, and if I were to stay outside Venice, it would be Padova, because of its short connecting train trip-and the fact that there is so much to see in this lovely city, and much to learn about art, as there is in Venice. But there is no Giotto in Venice, only Padova. Both would be great bases-but from Padova you can also easily visit the lovely towns of Bassano del Grappa and Asolo by car. There are many advantages to staying in Padova, and if the OP wants to stay there, I think it's a great choice.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 06:14 PM
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We've left rental cars at Piazzele Roma twice - once for 4 nights and once for 5 nights. But we took everything with us - even left the glove box open to show it was empty - and parked with the trunk to the wall. There were carts there for luggage and it;s a very short walk - just a minute or 2 - to the water taxi stop. We took one direct to the hotel both times - but the hotels had private docks. That may not make sense if the hotel is quite far from a dock - and depending on how much you have to tote. (We are NOT super light packers - since you don;t need to be on road trips - and I hate paying just as much to have panties washed as it cost to buy them (unless it's on the company's dollar).
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Old May 26th, 2008, 06:15 PM
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twoflower

Everyone certainly has their opinions and some express them very strongly. Let me just share an experience:

We had to wait quite a long time once, in a line of cars, to get in the multi story car park at Piazzale Roma. I don't think I would do it again, based on that experience. If I were to approach Venice again by car, I might consider leaving the car in Mestre, in a secure lot, near the train station there, as mentioned above. The Piazzale Roma garage is expensive, which might also sway me to the Mestre garages.

Another thought: someone above mentions parking at Tronchetto. This is not the same as Piazzale Roma. You can see the difference between the two parking areas on a good map. I don't know the price difference.

Also, I don't know if the train stops at Tronchetto, but I'm sure you can get a bus.

Again, above, there is a post that makes the train to Venice from Mestre sound as if it is a much better option than the bus. I have done both and don't see the advantage of one over the other. On our last trip to Venice, we took the bus because it was included in our Venice Pass. The bus was pleasant, uncrowded, easy, etc.

Finally, it is my opinion that I much prefer to stay in Venice proper when visiting Venice. I hope this helps.
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Old May 26th, 2008, 06:19 PM
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Lot's of people hate Venice too (really, I know some of them)

The basis for making the decision is not how nice Padua may be.

Unless some place is only day trip worthy, which Venice certainly is not (could we agree on that much?) staying 40 minutes away and losing 2-3 hours of visiting time (please don't tell me how lovely the countryside is between Mestre and Padua), plus quiet solitudes and vistas in the evening and morning is a waste.

You like Padua, I get it.
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